Dimples, bulges, lumps, bumps, the dreaded “orange-peel” skin–for many women, cellulite is an enemy that refuses to be vanquished. Sometimes called “thin woman’s fat,” cellulite, which is really pockets of trapped fat under the skin, afflicts women of all sizes, weights, and levels of physical fitness. If you have cellulite and are looking for a natural, simple and inexpensive remedy, you might want to try a homemade coffee cellulite cream; the caffeine in coffee has properties that make it a good choice for women trying to improve the appearance of their skin.



Features of Cellulite

Cellulite tends to develop on thighs, buttocks, and the abdomen. Its formation is affected by hormones, particularly estrogen, and it is during hormonal changes–puberty, pregnancy, menopause, and while taking birth control pills–that you are most vulnerable. Genetics also plays a role–if your mother had cellulite, the chances are you will too. Cellulite is stored in subcutaneous fat layers, and these layers are organized into large upright sections. In men, these sections are small, slanting, and not likely to store cellulite–the reason cellulite is almost never seen in men. The effect of diet and exercise on cellulite is limited, although being overweight and in poor shape will make the appearance of cellulite even more unsightly. As women age, loss of tone in the connective tissue and skin conspires to make the presence of cellulite more noticeable.

Caffeine

You can use coffee–more specifically, caffeine–to help you fight cellulite. Caffeine is the chemical responsible for the lift you feel when you drink coffee or energy drinks, which is why it is widely used to improve mental alertness and reduce fatigue. But this versatile substance has many other uses. Because it constricts blood vessels and has anti-inflammatory properties, caffeine is used in treatments to decrease the flushing from rosacea and to reduce the redness and itching of dermatitis. There is also some research indicating that it may help reduce the damaging effects to skin of too much sun.

Caffeine–a stimulant, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, and potent anti-oxidant–may be a worthwhile ally to recruit in the fight against cellulite. You can make your own cellulite cream by mixing a quarter-cup of coffee grounds–fresh and still warm from your brewer or percolator–with a tablespoon of olive oil. Use a loofah to massage the mixture onto cellulite-plagued spots, then wrap the treated area in clear plastic wrap and keep it on for five to 10 minutes. Take off the wrap, brush off the mixture, and shower. Use twice weekly.

Precautions and Tips

Make sure the coffee grounds have cooled enough to apply to your skin, and stand on newspapers as you apply the mixture to prevent spillage on floors. Since caffeine is a drug and a certain amount may be absorbed through your skin, check with your doctor before using to make sure it won’t interfere with prescription medicine or aggravate a health condition.